Deadly mushroom in Northern California poisoned 14 people during the last couple of months including an 18-month-old girl and three who need liver transplants.
The California Poison Control System received reports of the cases over a two-week period in December, even though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) didn’t declare the events until Friday.
The poison cases were included in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The death cap
The mushroom is identified as the “death cap,” or Amanita phalloides, a mushroom accountable for around 90% of the mushroom-related deaths worldwide. The CDC said they raise “serious public health concerns” and call for mushroom hunters to be cautious and get an expert in order to check their harvest before eating.
The CDC added that “inexperienced foragers should be strongly discouraged from eating any wild mushrooms.”
The death cap have a toxic agent so one mushroom even little mushrooms can carry a lethal dosage. Many mushroom incidents taking place California reported that victims ate more than one mushroom.
In 2016, due to rain and warm temperatures, the state noticed an increase in wild mushroom poisonings along with many wild mushroom growing
The worst case
One case was about an entire family in Salinas. A forager gave mushrooms to a woman before she cooks them for her husband, her 18 month old girl, her sister and a friend. After eating the fatal mushrooms without knowing, they all became ill. The baby girl and the sister urgently needed liver transplants.
“It was like a bus accident happening right in front of the hospital,” Dr. Todd Mitchell said in an attempt to explain the life-and-death difficulties of treating mushroom poisoning.
“These mushrooms continue to wipe out entire families each and every year in Nepal, South Africa, Russia, Ukraine, Vietnam and India as well as China,” Mitchell continued. “Amatoxin mushroom poisoning is an unrecognized worldwide public health crisis. Literally, hundreds die every single year.”